May is the beginning of the chamois rut, and our chamois first foot hunter of the year has arrived from Idaho, USA.
Chamois is a small mountain antelope species, males or bucks weigh about 60-120 pounds, while females weight around 50-100 pounds. Like the Himalayan tahr, chamois are only found in the South Island of New Zealand, outside of Europe and Spain. Chamois bucks typically live solitary lives outside of the rut, when they’ll come down to seek out the nannies. Chamois live in reasonably steep country on the edge of native vegetation, and can be found at higher altitudes than tahr at times. With exceptional 10X eyesight and high-strung temperament these animals are one of the most challenging, rewarding and underrated animals to hunt in the world.
New Zealand Safaris is one of the only outfitters in the world that offers limited free range, wild chamois hunting on foot. All of our chamois hunts are on privately owned land. Hunters are required to be an above average shot to foot to hunt chamois, shot distances are often between 250-350 yards, and given the country chamois live in hunters should be in good “sheep shape” fitness.